‘Toy Story 3′ is an adventurous, hilarious, heartwrenching, and flawless end to an era

Woody, Buzz Lightyear, and other old favorites plus a new crop of toys are back and better than ever in Disney-Pixar's 'Toy Story 3.'

Outrageous comedies, flashy action flicks, sappy romantic dramas and chick flicks, and films starring the eye candy of the month may be all the rage at the box office these days, but nothing will grab a hold of you like Toy Story 3. Given that an animated film won’t allow the likes of a shirtless Taylor Lautner or Megan Fox in short-shorts to appear, Toy Story 3 still has everything you’ll find in those above-listed items in one family-friendly package – AND stuff that only the Toy Story franchise can bring to entertain.

The third (and final) film comes after an 11-year gap from the release of Toy Story 2. In this latest installment, toy owner Andy is now a 17-year-old entering college and adulthood – and adulthood means leaving the beloved toys behind. As the toys struggle with the reality of separating from their owner and possibly with each other, they are mistakenly placed in a daycare center. So begins another fun-filled and clever yet intense adventure, and the toys’ friendships and loyalties to each other are put to the ultimate test.

Of course, major characters Woody (voiced by Tom Hanks), Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen), Jessie, Rex, Hamm, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, Slinky Dog, and other familiar favorites are the stars of the film, but a new adventure is grounds for new characters: in particular, there’s Barbie and Ken, both of whose quirks and entire existences provide many great laughs throughout the movie, and Lotso, a seemingly cuddly bear who has a villainous side.

Perhaps the best thing about Toy Story 3 is not necessarily the characters, the dialogue, the action sequences, or the fun of it, but how real it is. Our toys can’t talk and have lives of their own (Or do they?), so I don’t mean it that way. We end up relating to Andy – having an innocent childhood with play things that we feel an attachment to, and still feeling that attachment even as we grow up, yet having to detach. As a member of the audience, however, we’re the ones that see these toys’ stories, so we also feel what they’re going through. Word of advice: Do bring tissues just in case.

The entire film flowed together wonderfully – there was never a dull moment. Honestly, everything about it was perfect. From the opening flashback sequence to the very bittersweet ending, Toy Story 3 is truly one of the most riveting films of the year. And for once, I have nothing to negative to say in a movie review!

OVERALL SCORE: 10/10

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